Past Productions and Awards
Liberty University has a history of over 25 years of theatrical productions, ranging from Greek tragedies to musical comedies, from classics to new plays. Thousands of students have performed on our stage, with many pursuing professional acting careers. The Department of Theatre Arts produces six shows a season, as well as student-produced work and cabarets. Past shows include:
- And Then There Were None
- Sense and Sensibility
- Bright Star
- As It Is In Heaven
- The Will Rogers Follies
- The Diary of Anne Frank
- Annie Get Your Gun
- Hello, Dolly!
- Much Ado About Nothing
The Department of Theatre Arts has competed in the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival for over ten years. Through participation with the KCACTF, students have been nominated for the Irene Ryan, a national acting award for excellence in the craft and art of acting and design. Past nominees include:
2021: Maia Anderson as Mary Bowser, Jordan Prather as Elizabeth Van Lew, Seth Somers as Timothy Webster, Melanie Ernst for Assistant Directing, Claire Flores for Stage Management, Aaron Hall for Projections Designer, Alyssa Hall for Hair & Makeup Designer, Mattea Harrison for Assistant Costume Designer, The 2020 Writing Project Team (Teagan Cooper, Melanie Ernst, Aaron Hall, Mattea Harrison, Kaley Hutter, Chase Matthews, Taryn Nunley, Carter Smith, Seth Somers) for Dramaturgy – all in Decipher.
2020: Gretchen Eckert as Elinor Dashwood, Ashley Banker as Lucy Steele/Gossip, Sarah Beattie for Stage Management – all in Sense and Sensibility.
2019: Brandon Yoder as Otto Frank, Matt Owen as Peter Van Daan, Judah Fox for Sound Design, Randall Melton for Dramaturgy, Kenzie Carroll for Stage Management – all in The Diary of Anne Frank; Hannah Mehl as Annie Oakley, Vincent Sadler as Frank Butler, Kaleb Lindevaldsen for Light Board Operation and Programming, Sierra Gibson for Stage Management – all in Annie Get Your Gun; Grace Ehrhorn as Fanny, Gracie Pitt as Izzy, Claire Flores for Stage Management – all in As It Is In Heaven; Becca Schultz as Emily Brent, Sydney Borchers as Vera Claythorne, Faith Giammarco for Stage Management – all in And Then There Were None; Joel Hadden as Ray Stevens, Luke Snavely as Frank Draper JR., Taryn Nunley as Elizabeth Teass, Laura Falcione for Stage Management, Meghan DiStefano for Props Management, Savannah Crowder for Assistant Dramaturg and Lobby Decor, Victoria Winsky for Hair and Makeup, Rebecca Pickard for Dramaturgy, Rendel Kellum for Original Music, The 2019 Writing Project for Student Playwriting and Dramaturgy – all in Bedford Boys.
2018: Maria Reginaldi as Rosie Alvarez, Hannah Mehl as Ursula Merkle, Brandon Shawl for Stage Management – all in Bye Bye Birdie; Ashlind Browne as Carrie Buck, Esther Eaton as Emma Buck/Nurse/Caroline Wilhelm/Singer, Sierra Gibson for Stage Management – all in Kin; Megan Grant as Princess of France, Vincent Sadler as Don Adriano de Armado, Rebecca Hibma for Stage Management – all in Love’s Labour’s Lost; Megan Grant as Princess of France, Claire Flores for Stage Management – all in Much Ado About Nothing; Adell Ehrhorn as June Carter, Shelby Mason as Maybelle Carter, Maria Reginaldi as Ella Mae Kirk, Lucia Standridge for Stage Management – all in Bloodroot: The Ballad of Clinch Mountain; Becca Schultz as Terry, Brandon Shawl for Choreography, Abigail Follmer for Costume Design – all in Sweet and Hot: The Songs of Harold Arlen.
2017: Hannah Mehl as Gertrude McFuzz, Rendel Kellum as Horton, Allison Hartfield for Stage Management – all in Seussical; Tatiana Harman as Kate Hardcastle, Caleb Towns as Charles Marlow, Sierra Gibson for Stage Management, Aidan Daniel for Asst. Costume Design – all in She Stoops to Conquer; Sarah Jirgal as Susy, Judah Fox as Mike, Matt Bushey as Roat, Rebecca Hibma for Stage Management – all in Wait Until Dark; Hannah Mehl as Millie Dillmount, Madeline Rasmusson as Miss Flannery, Jaymee Wagner for Stage Management, Nicki Kelly for Assistant Scenic Artist – all in Thoroughly Modern Millie; Rachel Jones as Abby Brewster, Gabrielle Crandall as Martha Brewster, Rebecca Berryman for Stage Management, Gracella Martin for Props Management, Laura Chandler Robinson for Hair and Makeup – all in Arsenic and Old Lace
2016: Tatiana Harman as Meg Brockie, Sarah Jirgal as Jean MacLaren, Ashton Kamphuis for Stage Management — all in Brigadoon; Kimberly Camacho as M’Lynn Eatenton, Amanda Ward as Clairee Belcher — both for Steel Magnolias; Ben Perry as Frank, Allison Hartfield for Hair & Makeup – both in Over The River; Maria Reginaldi as Sister Sarah Brown, Sarah Jirgal as Miss Adelaide, Kelsey Reichard for Hair & Makeup — all in Guys & Dolls
2015: Lindsey Register as Nellie Forbush, Monica Oquendo-Alvarez as Bloody Mary, Ashton Kamphuis for Stage Management — all in South Pacific; Heather Reed as Death, McKenzie Connel as Minion Leader, Cassandra McCall for Stage Management, Film Editor: Dylan Giovanetto for Terminological Design — all in Everyman; Matthew Brandon as Malvolio — in Twelfth Night; Makenzie Pusey as Esther Smith, Amanda Ward as Rose Smith, Catheryn Hooper for Props Management, Brooke Spencer for Stage Management — all in Meet Me In St. Louis
Faculty & Staff Awards
- In 2021 the Liberty Design Team members were awarded Certificates of Merit for Decipher in the following areas: Lillian Sharpe-Costume Design, Connie Hecker – Scenic Design, Mark Howieson – Lighting Design, Greg Vinson – Sound Design and Original Music.
- In 2019, the Department of Theatre Arts received National Awards for the Distinguished Production of a New Work, Distinguished Achievement of Dramaturgy, Distinguished Exploration of a Historical Legacy, and National Commendation of Student Writers and Director, Scott Hayes for Bloodroot: The Ballad of Clinch Mountain.
- In 2004, Liberty Theatre was asked to showcase Monte Cristo at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival.
- Linda Nell Cooper has received multiple National Award for Excellence in Directing for shows such as Secret Garden, Aida, Into the Woods, Thoroughly Modern Millie, West Side Story, and Jane Eyre.
- Chris Nelson has received multiple National Award for Excellence in Directing for shows such as Little Shop of Horrors, Ragtime, Everyman, Arsenic and Old Lace, and The Diary of Anne Frank.
- Andy Geffken has received multiple National Award for Excellence in Directing for shows such as Brigadoon, Guys & Dolls, Bye Bye Birdie, and Annie Get Your Gun.
- Scott Hayes received a National Award for Excellence in Directing of Steel Magnolias.
- Neal Brasher received a National Award for Excellence in Directing of She Stoops to Conquer.
- Mark Howieson received National Award for Scenic Design of Wait Until Dark and Bye Bye Birdie.
- Connie Hecker received a National Award for Scenic Design of Kin and Annie Get Your Gun.
- Barry Gawinski received a National Award for Lighting Design of Bye Bye Birdie and Bedford Boys.
- Lynne Forth received National Award for Costume Design of The Rivals, She Stoops to Conquer, and Arsenic and Old Lace.
- April McWilliams received a National Award for Lighting Design of And Then There Were None.
- Lillian Sharpe received a National Award for Costume Design of Bedford Boys.